That's right, folks. Professional MMA will soon be legalized in the last place in all of North America that's kept it illegal.
The news comes from Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie's communications director, Michael Whyland.
In case you still have some misgivings (which is understandable), here are some numbers to bolster your confidence:The Assembly will take up MMA on the floor next week.— Mike Whyland (@mwhyland) March 15, 2016
- To make it out of the Democratic Conference for a floor vote, the MMA Bill has needed the votes of 76 Democrats; it now has 80.
- While there are opponents in the three necessary committees (Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development, Ways and Means, and Codes), they're outnumbered.
- On the floor, the MMA Bill has enough Democratic support to pass, but when you factor in the Republican support, it's going to be a landslide.
Here's an official statement from the UFC:
Statement from UFC® Vice President of Global Business Development
and Government Relations Michael J Britt
“We want to thank Speaker Heastie and of course we also need to thank Majority Leader Morelle, who has worked tirelessly to educate his colleagues and build support on both sides of the aisle, but particularly among Assembly Democrats. Our thanks, as well, go to those legislators in both houses and both parties who have supported this effort over the years.
“This is a big step forward for MMA, the athletes and the huge fan base the sport enjoys in New York, however, there are still more steps before New York finally crosses the hurdle to legalize professional MMA. We look forward to working with the chairs of the committees and all Assemblymembers to provide them with any information they may need as they address the bill to legalize and regulate MMA.”
Remember that old saying "Don't count your chickens before they've hatched?" Well, screw it. Start counting them!